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Sexual maturity of the marine crab Hepatus pudibundus (Herbst, 1785) (Decapoda: Brachyura: Aethridae) in the region of Cananéia , São Paulo, Brazil

Grant number: 14/27206-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): October 01, 2015
Effective date (End): September 30, 2017
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology - Morphology of Recent Groups
Principal Investigator:Rogério Caetano da Costa
Grantee:Josiane Siqueira Barbieri
Host Institution: Faculdade de Ciências (FC). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Bauru. Bauru , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:10/50188-8 - Decapod crustaceans: multi-disciplinary characterization of the sea biodiversity of the State of São Paulo (taxonomy, spermiotaxonomy, molecular biology and population dynamics), AP.BTA.TEM


The crab Hepatus pudibundus presents wide abundance in the Brazilian coast and is considered as bycatch in shrimp fishing. This study aims to apply the statistical method "relative growth" to estimate the morphological sexual maturity of this specie in the region of Cananéia, southern coast of São Paulo. The crabs were captured using a shrimp boat equipped with a double-rig trawl net. The study of relative growth is an analysis establishing relations between two body dimensions, obtained by measuring individuals at different stages of life. In the laboratory the crabs were sexed and with a precision digital caliper (0.01mm) the following dimensions will be measured: carapace width (LC), carapace length (CC), right propodus length (CPd), right propodus height (APd), left propodus length (CPe), left propodus height (APe), abdomen width (LA), and additionally for the males, gonopodium length (CG). The relative growth will be based on the allometric equation y = axb. The coefficient "b" amount will be calculated for each biometrical relationship. The data will be log-transformed, plotted in scatter plots, and adjusted using the coefficient of determination (R²) for each relationship. A non-hierarchical K-means cluster analysis will be performed to characterize the correct division into demographic categories, them a covariance analysis (ANCOVA) to test the differences among formed groups in coefficients. So, the amount of the inflection point will be used to estimate the morphological sexual maturity.

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